Excuse me, technically I’m supposed to be talking about Rot am See, a town found within the Hohenloher Ebene. Sorry, I got all excited about the umpteen number of castles and castle ruins found within the region; I kinda lost myself for a minute there. ;-)
Well, I guess that means if you’re itching to go castle sightseeing then you’ve absolutely come to the right place. It’s also the right place if you want to combine said castle visits with some great cultural events and fantastic outdoor recreational fun, too.
You know what? You can blend the castle visits with the outdoor stuff — ’cause that’s where you’ll find them — outside. At the moment I’ve counted no less than seven castles close to Rot am See, and it’s really hard to pick a favorite.
Sorry, Burgruine Werdeck, there’s not much left of your 13th century beginnings to say you’re my favorite; nor is there anything left of Burg Roßbürg — a castle destroyed more than 500 years ago.
Of all the ruins, I’d have to say Ruine Bebenburg would be the best, even if all that’s left are the craggy grey stones of its keep.
Hey, at least Schloss Kirchberg and Schloss Hornberg (both in Kirchberg an der Jagst) are still standing. The former is now a Renaissance castle, even though it has medieval beginnings. and the latter’s builders sure picked a prime strategic location. You’d never know Hornberg was damaged by bombing during World War II.
Oh yeah, I’d say Schloss Morstein (part of Gerabronn) is my favorite intact castle — probably because it once had a drawbridge.
Obviously you can’t see all this in one day, and you haven’t even gotten to the parties yet; best to stick around for a while. Rot am See is a place where you’ll find art exhibitions at the local Community Center, but also festivals like the Spring Festival (March); the Hauptfest (June); a Kirchweih (June); a Waldfest (Forest Festival, July); and great markets like the Martinsmarkt in November, the twice yearly Cattle Market in March and December; or the Bartholomämarkt every August.
While Rot am See might fall within the Land of Castles, it could also be called the “land of cycling routes,” since there are seventeen trails through the Franconian countryside. Don’t worry about getting lost, you can easily get a route map over at the Rathaus (Town Hall).
Oh yeah, don’t forget to visit Rot am See’s Local History Museum while you’re over there, too.
I might’ve lost myself in the beginning, but now that I got it altogether, I’ve found Rot am See to be a wonderful place to explore the most amazing castles, the prettiest countryside, and the most fun festivals — and I think you will too.